Mariehamn

MARITIME MINI-METROPOLIS

Mariehamn is the smallest Nordic capital and the only town in Åland.

With 1.5 million incoming visitors each year the population is used to welcoming visitors from a variety of different cultures and backgrounds.

The maritime industry is always present, adding an international touch to many companies and even families. In Mariehamn you find more restaurants, cafés and unique shops than in other towns of the same size. In summertime different events offer interesting meetings between the locals and tourists.

The most significant landmark in Mariehamn is the four-masted steel barque Pommern; one of the best preserved historic vessels in the world. Adjacent to the Pommern is the award winning Åland Maritime Museum, rich in objects and stories from the age of sail.

The Town of Mariehamn has long and proud sailing traditions. During the summers of the 1920s and 1930s, the West Harbour of Mariehamn was teeming with tall ships lying in wait for the autumn and the next 10-month return voyage to Australia. Aspiring sailors from all over the world came to Mariehamn in the hope of securing a place as an apprentice on board one of these ships, either as a necessity for getting their master’s certificate or as an adventure of a lifetime.

Memorable maritime events

Mariehamn has had the honour and privilege to host tall ships on four different occasions during the late 1980’s and the early 2000’s, among others;

1988 - Cutty Sark Tall Ships Races

2000 - Cutty Sark Tall Ships Races (cruise in company)

2003 - Sail Pommern

2007 - Cruise Mariehamn

Åland in brief

  • Form of government: Autonomous demilitarized territory in Finland since 1921
  • Language: Swedish
  • EU-member: Since 1995 (remains outside the EU tax union)
  • Symbols: Own flag since 1954 and stamps since 1984 and car registration plates
  • Top-domain: .ax
  • Islands: 6 700
  • Population: approx. 29 000
  • Municipalities: 16
  • Currency: Euro
  • Most common surname: Karlsson
  • Curiosity: The world’s oldest champagne was found in a wreck in Åland’s outer archipelago in 2010.

Facts about Mariehamn

  • Founded: 1861 when Finland was a part of Russia
  • Area: 11.6 km² (plus water area 10 km²)
  • Population: approx. 11 500
  • Registered companies: approx. 1 000
  • Curiosity: Mariehamn is the first municipality in Finland to
    have obtained the international ISO14001-certification, for managing its environmental impacts and responsibilities.